For all the amazing benefits our devices can bring, they can also bring forth all manner of time-wasting distractions. If you’re having some issues staying focused – and you have an Android device – then the Unpluq may just help you out with that.
How does it work? Well, this portion of the Kickstarter campaign page will explain it pretty succinctly:
Unpluq is the combination of a hardware key (the Unpluq key) and a custom Android launcher (the Unpluq Launcher). A launcher is the software on your phone that allows you to open other apps – it’s what you see when you press the home button.
By detaching the Unpluq key from your phone, the launcher switches to Unpluq mode, in which only apps of your choice will be available and notifications of all other apps will be blocked. Yet when you make the conscious decision to plug the Unpluq key back in, you will have the functionality of your entire phone, and the notifications that were blocked while you were in Unpluq mode will be shown to you.
So, with the hardware device that you’re plugging into the phone, you’re making that very conscious decision that you want to, say, get onto social media and stream some shows. I would presume that, over time (and probably pretty quickly) you’ll unlearn some of those behaviors, and just stop trying to get into those apps. I could even conceivably see this being used as a way to allow a school-aged child to have a phone for emergency calls, etc, but keep things locked away from access unless they’re at home (if you’re inclined to that approach).
There are all manner of ways you can try to manage this (generally focused around homescreen organization or timer apps), but the Unpluq is the most intrusive – and only hardware-based – method I’ve seen to-date. Given the use of the custom launcher, iOS users need not apply. The campaign is running for a few more days (it closes out on March 19th) with earlybird pricing still available for $22 for the device (and customized launcher). The campaign is about 85% funded, so hopefully this one crosses the finish line, and backers will get some help regaining control over their devices. campaign page